John Snow Scholarship

Applications close Monday 8 October 2018, 5pm AEDT.

The John Snow Scholarship is available to medical students and provides an opportunity to do a presentation relating to public health at the RACP Congress or AFPHM Annual Scientific Meeting. The scholarship aims to increase the awareness among medical students so that they are able to identify:

  • public health medicine as a medical speciality or potential career, and
  • the AFPHM as the learned college for public health medicine training, by providing opportunities for intellectual and social discourse between medical students and AFPHM Fellows and trainees.

The AFPHM John Snow Scholarship acknowledges the best medical school student presentation relating to public health at the RACP Congress or AFPHM Annual Scientific Meeting.

Stage 1: Medical students are invited to submit:

  • a piece of written work relating to any of the AFPHM competencies
  • a reflection piece
  • a presentation plan describing how they would present their work at the RACP Congress or AFPHM Annual Scientific Meeting 

Stage 2: A representative from each Australian State/Territory and New Zealand will be invited to present at the following year's RACP Congress or AFPHM Annual Scientific Meeting where the presentations will be judged, and a national recipient will be selected.


View the successful 2017 John Snow Scholarship Recipients

See more testimonials from past recipients.

Who is eligible? 

Applicants must be medical students currently enrolled in a medical school in an Australian or New  Zealand University.

What is the prize? 

The prize for each regional representative is:

  • Travel assistance up to AUD $400 (includes accommodation)
  • Full registration to attend the RACP Congress in 2019, including the AFPHM President's Dinner.

 Participants and the national recipient also receive a certificate in recognition of their achievement. 

What is the application and selection process? 

  1. Read the Terms and Conditions (Prizes)
  2. Applicants are required to complete the application form and provide the following submissions:
    1. Piece of work submitted for formative or summative assessment: A piece of work previously submitted for formative or summative assessment to the applicant's medical school.This could include a piece from the applicant's professional portfolio.

      This Piece is not assessed as part of the application but is required to ensure that the scholarship is equally accessible to all medical students, not just those who have done extra-curricular public health study/work. It may be, but does not have to be a public health project. It could be a case history, reflection, evidence based medicine project, or clinical audit.

    2. A Reflection Piece (800 - 1000 words) describing the applicant has developed an understanding of:
      1. The selected AFPHM competency element(s) and
      2. Public health in general, by undertaking the attached medical school assessment piece.
    3. A Presentation Plan of no more than 500 words describing how the applicant would present the assessment piece and the reflection if chosen as a scholarship recipient.
    4. Applicants are required to submit a letter of support from the University confirming that they are currently enrolled as a student and that the piece of work selected has been submitted for formative or summative assessment. This letter should be signed by the Dean of the Medical School. A template is provided for use.
  3. References must be formatted in Vancouver styles as required by the Medical Journal of Australia.
  4. If the Formative Summative Assessment Piece is a group project, applicants are required to submitan individual application with individual Reflection and Presentation Plans demonstrating what the applicant has learned, not the group learning.
  5. Applications will be assessed by each AFPHM Regional Committee which will select a regional finalist representative to attend and present at the RACP Congress 2019 where a national recipient will be selected.
  6. To allow unbiased "blind" selection of scholarship recipients, applicants must not include their name or any personal identifying information in the selected piece of work, reflection or presentation plan. These items will be extracted from the application and identified numerically.
  7. Applications forms and supporting documentation are to be submitted by the applicant in a single document in PDF format to by the above closing date.
  8. Applicants will be advised of the outcome of their application by following the decision of the selection panels. 

Selection Criteria and Marking Guide

History of John Snow and the scholarship 

John Snow was an English physician who is widely considered to be one of the founding fathers of epidemiology and public health. In 1854, when illness was thought to be caused by 'miasma' (bad air), he mapped the geographic location of cases during a cholera outbreak in London and conducted case-control and cohorts studies which identified the Broad Street pump as the source of the illness. On this basis, he organised for the pump handle to be removed, thus controlling the outbreak - a classic example of a public health intervention. This is commemorated in the AFPHM logo which includes a water pump with no handle. 

The John Snow Scholarship was introduced in 2009. Since its introduction the scholarship has recognised the work of medical students with an interest in public health and given them the opportunity for intellectual and social discourse with other like-minded medical students and AFPHM Fellows and trainees at the Royal Australian College of Physicians' Annual Congress.

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More information 

Contact us 

For any further information please contact the RACP Foundation at

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